movies

'Avatar' stuns Hollywood with $1 billion worldwide in 17 days

'Sherlock' hits $140 million, 'Blind Side' passes $200 million

Sam Worthington in his Avatar Body in James Cameron's Avatar

"Avatar" is a monster of a movie across the globe.

Credit: 20th Century Fox


Do you doubt that "Avatar" can pass "Titanic's" domestic record of $600 million?  After a spectacular holiday frame where "Avatar" keeps smashing one record after another it seems more likely by the day.  The film's latest achievement? James Cameron's acclaimed epic has now made over $1 billion worldwide in only 17 days. This is remarkable as only four other films, "Titanic," "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" and "The Dark Knight" have hit that amazing milestone.  And considering the "Return of the King's" No. 2 mark is only $1.119 billion it won't take "Avatar" long to pass it.  

For the weekend, "Avatar" grossed $68.3 million in the U.S. for a new cume of $352.1 million.  Worldwide, the total now stands at a staggering $1.018 billion.

During the week between Christmas and New Year's, "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakuel" consistently placed right behind "Avatar," while Warner Bros.' "Sherlock Holmes" slid into third and seemed to be losing some momentum.  Further investigating will find, however, that "Holmes" made a comeback over the New Year's weekend with $38.4 million and a new domestic total of $140.7 million.  The Robert Downey, Jr. hit should finish past $200 million when all is said and done. Oh, and a new franchise is born.

"Alvin" deux isn't doing too badly, though.  The "Squeakuel" found another $36.6 million over the holiday weekend for a new cume of $157.3 million.  There is very little family film competition in January so the CG animation/live action hybrid should keep raking in the dough for some time.

Holding steady in fourth was "It's Complicated" with another $18.7 million and $59.1 million so far.  Depending on how awards season goes, "Complicated" could end up north of $100 million after all the ballots are tabulated.

Rounding out the top five was Sandra Bullock's "The Blind Side."  The small town phenomenon hasn't slowed down as it found yet another $12.6 million over the frame.  More importantly, "Blind" side passed the $200 million mark becoming one of the true sleeper hits of 2009 and cementing Bullock's comeback status as America's reigning cinematic sweetheart. [Editor's note: For a complete look at the Top Ten Blockbusters of 2009, click here.]

In sixth place, "Up in the Air" grossed $11.4 million for a new total of $45 million.  The low budgeted Jason Reitman comedy quietly found an audience as it expanded nationwide over the holidays.

Here's the top ten for the weekend according to Box Office Mojo.  Final tallies are released on Monday.

1. "Avatar," $68.3 million, $352.1 million to date.

2. "Sherlock Holmes," $38.4 million, $140.6 million to date.

3. "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel," $36.6 million, $157.3 million to date.

4. "It's Complicated," $18.7 million, $59.1 million to date.

5. "The Blind Side," $12.7 million, $209 million to date.

6. "Up in the Air," $11.4 million , $45 million to date.

7. "The Princess and the Frog," $10 million, $86 million to date.

8. "Did You Hear About the Morgans?", $5.2 million, $25.6 million to date.

9. "Nine," $4.3 million, $14 million to date.

10. "Invictus," $4.1 million, $30 million to date.
 

Greg-ellwood-sm
Gregory Ellwood
Editor-in-Chief, Co-Founder
With over a decade of experience in the movie industry, Ellwood survived working for two major studios and has written for Variety, MSN and the LA Times. A co-founder of HitFix, Ellwood spends his time relaxing hitting 3’s on the basketball court and following his beloved Clippers.
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